Indian oppression in occupied Kashmir has again crossed all limits of cruelty and brought the long pending Kashmir conflict to limelight once again. Barbarities being committed by the Indian army in Kashmir valley have taken a huge toll on the lives of the Kashmiri people who are demanding freedom from the Indian custody for once and for all. Occupied Kashmir is witnessing extensive violence since July 8th, when Hizb-ul-Mujahideen’s militant Burhan Wani was killed in a clash with Indian army. Since then, over 60 civilians have been killed and 3,000 injured.
Recently Arundhati Roy a known novelist and a human rights activist in India has raised her voice against Indian ‘barbarity’ in the occupied Kashmir. Roy started a campaign against the barbarity going on in occupied Kashmir by the Indian army and has found backlash even in Pakistan, to the extent that Treasury Member of Punjab Provincial Assembly Sheikh Alla uddin suggested the assembly to invite her to speak on the issue of Kashmir. This suggestion was welcomed in the assembly.
Raja Ashfaq Sarwar who is the Labour and Human Resource Minister of Punjab has appreciated the idea and said that the Pakistan Foreign Office must be approached and it should be sought out soon. Pakistan has been expressing its concern for the Kashmiris since the violence in the region began in July this year. Even though we suspect that the invitation to talk on Kashmir issue from Pakistan can lead to a huge outrage of ultra nationalist right-wing Hindu parties. Yet Arundhati Roy has been an avid supporter of the people of Kashmir and their right to sovereignty. Roy’s strong views on the national issues have also drawn the criticism of their renowned actor Anupam Kher who has questioned Roy’s nationality and went on calling her anti-India.
In another strategic push to bring global attention on India’s relentless human rights exploitation in the Indian held Kashmir, Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has decided to send twenty-two parliamentarians as his special envoy to different countries. The twenty-two parliamentarians who are nominated as special envoys to highlight Indian atrocity for the Kashmir issue in countries across the world include Malik Uzair and Ijaz ul Haq for Belgium, Alamdad Laleka and Khusro Bakhtiar for China, Junaid Anwar Chaudhry, Nawab Ali Wasan and Raza Hayat Hiraj for the Russia.
Prime minister of Pakistan has also nominated Maj (retd) Tahir Iqbal, Fazlur Rehman and Muhammad Afzal Khokhar for Saudi Arabia, Malik Pervaiz and Mohsin Shahnawaz Ranjha for Turkey, Qaiser Sheikh and Lt Gen (retd) Abdul Qayyum for the UK. Shazra Mansab Ali Khan and Mushahid Hussain Syed would highlight the Kashmir issue in the US and the United Nations; Rana Muhammad Afzal and Ayesha Raza Farooq in France; Abdul Rehman Kanju in South Africa and Awais Leghari in the UN Geneva office.
The Kashmir conflict has been the oldest point of dispute between India and Pakistan relations. Unfortunately, the two countries have fought three wars over Kashmir. But recently India has again formally rejected Pakistan’s proposal to hold talks exclusively on the issue of Kashmir.